Mo. court strikes death penalty, cites disability - KMOV.com

Mo. court strikes death penalty, cites disability

 

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- The Missouri Supreme Court has overturned the death sentence of a southeast Missouri man after determining he is mentally disabled.

Andrew Lyons had been sentenced to death for killing his estranged girlfriend and her mother in September 1992 in Cape Girardeau.

On Tuesday, Missouri's high court determined Lyons was "mentally retarded" and reduced his sentence to life in prison for the slaying of his girlfriend, Bridgette Harris.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2002 that the mentally retarded cannot be executed.

This is the second repreive Lyons has received. In 2007, the Missouri Supreme Court reduced his death sentence to life in prison for the slaying of Evelyn Sparks, his girlfriend's mother, because he had been sentenced by a judge instead of a jury.

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